When Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) didn’t retain ace-spinner Rashid Khan ahead of the mega-auction of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022, many experts termed it as a blunder, considering the match-winning abilities the Afghan-lad possesses.
However, the Kane Williamson-led side proved with the recent-few performances in the fifteenth season that despite the absence of Rashid, the Hyderabad-based franchise is capable of beating all the odds.
Notably, after losing their first two fixtures in IPL 2022, Sunrisers roared back to form, winning five matches on the trot to acquire the second spot in the points table.
In fact, SRH’s last victory that came against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), gave enough hints concerning how settled their bowling unit is in this edition. The Sunrisers completely dominated the proceedings against the Faf du Plessis-led RCB, skittling them to the fifth-lowest total (68) in the history of IPL on Saturday (April 23).
After the match, SRH’s batting coach Brian Lara explained that their team is better without Rashid in the bowling line-up. Lara claimed that Rashid was not a wicket-taker for the Sunrisers as the other teams looked to play him out defensively.
“I have great respect for Rashid Khan, but I believe we have the right combination. Rashid Khan was someone who opposition teams decided to defend against, he was not much of a wicket-taker,” said Lara while speaking with broadcaster Star Sports.
“Yes (economy of) 5.5-6 runs per over is great, but I think when you have a guy like Washington Sundar spinning the ball into the left-handers in the first six overs, he is an asset. Suchith has come in as his replacement due to injury, and he is an asset as well,” he added.
SRH brought the likes of Washington Sundar, Jagadeesha Suchith and mystery spinner, Shreyas Gopal in the current season. While Gopal has not gotten a game yet, the other two have proved their worth.
“We have gone in with four fast bowlers every single game so far. Of course, the pitches may change, they may have less grass later on. We have Shreyas Gopal as well, though he hasn’t had a game so far. He is also someone who has a hat-trick in the IPL,” Lara added further.